While there has never been a Major League franchise in Oklahoma, it is the birthplace of some of the greatest ballplayers to ever play the game, including Willie Stargell, Johnny Bench and even Mickey Mantle. MLB's Hall of Fame Tour comes to Tulsa, Okla., this week to pay homage to these Cooperstown greats, and to give fans a chance to view the one-of-a-kind attraction at ONEOK Field, home of the Tulsa Drillers.
The traveling exhibition blends state-of-the-art virtual reality with Hall of Fame artifacts and interactive displays to give fans a truly unique baseball experience. Visitors at the Tour's first three stops this year have had a chance to compete in MLBAM's state-of-the-art virtual reality video game, "Home Run Derby," within the unparalleled 3D environment of one of eight iconic ballparks. A separate VR experience also lets baseball fanatics relive the 2016 postseason, from the Wild Card Game all the way through the clinching moment of the Cubs' historic World Series victory. And of course, this cutting-edge technology is paired with a collection of timeless artifacts from Cooperstown itself that any baseball diehard can appreciate.
Tulsa is nearly equidistant from Kansas City and Frisco, both of which have hosted the Tour in the past. Hall of Famer and Royals alumnus George Brett even dropped by to take in the excitement in Kansas City, and other notable guests who have visited the tour include Ozzie Smith, Andre Dawson, Bert Blyleven and Commissioner Emeritus Bud Selig. The Drillers, who will play host to the Tour, are a Texas League affiliate of the Los Angeles Dodgers. Numerous big leaguers have donned Drillers jerseys as they passed through Double-A, including Troy Tulowitzki, Matt Holliday, Ivan Rodriguez and Sammy Sosa, among others.
The Tour will be in Tulsa from May 5-13. Take in a Drillers game, and be sure to stop by the Tour and see some of the best Cooperstown -- and Oklahoma -- has to offer. Check out a mitt used by Bench himself as the Oklahoman neared the end of his 17-year playing career. Stop and stare at Mantle's digital plaque, which fans can find in the Tour's "Our Hall of Famers" exhibit. You can even take a history selfie with Harrah, Okla., natives Paul and Lloyd Waner -- Big Poison and Little Poison -- in the "Our Memories" exhibit. For more information or to buy tickets, visit HallofFameTour.com.
Joseph Sparacio is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.